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Mexico: Market Profile

Picture: Mexico factsheet
Picture: Mexico factsheet

1. Overview

Mexico is the second largest economy in Latin America. Mexico has a free market economy in the trillion USD class. It consists of highly diversified and modern industries, with significant amounts of private investment. Recent administrations have expanded competition in seaports, railroads, telecommunications, electricity generation, natural gas distribution and airports, among others. While trade growth remains strong, emerging risks stemming from the ongoing North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) renegotiations and the pace of internal reforms may impact investment. Significant tightening of fiscal and monetary policy in recent years have also weighed on domestic demand. Private consumption, however, has withstood the fall in real wages associated with an inflationary spike in 2017. Implementation of energy reforms has been successful in attracting private participation to the sector, and the downward trend in investment and production in the oil sector is expected to be reversed, boosting potential output growth.

Source: World Bank, Fitch Solutions

2. Major Economic/Political Events and Upcoming Elections

March 2016
Mexico declared that it would not pay for a planned wall to be built along the Mexican-US border in its first direct response to then-US presidential candidate Donald Trump's electoral pledge.

July 2018
General elections were held, with the presidential election won by Andrés Manuel López Obrador of the National Regeneration Movement (MORENA), running as the candidate of the Juntos Haremos Historia alliance. He will assume office on December 1, 2018 to serve a six-year term.

Source: BBC country profile – Timeline, Fitch Solutions Political Risk Analysis

3. Major Economic Indicators

Graph: Mexico real GDP and inflation
Graph: Mexico real GDP and inflation
Graph: Mexico GDP by sector (2017)
Graph: Mexico GDP by sector (2017)
Graph: Mexico unemployment rate
Graph: Mexico unemployment rate
Graph: Mexico current account balance
Graph: Mexico current account balance

e = estimate, f = forecast
Source: International Monetary Fund, World Bank, Fitch Solutions
Date last reviewed: August 28, 2018

4. External Trade

4.1 Merchandise Trade

Graph: Mexico merchandise trade
Graph: Mexico merchandise trade

Source: WTO
Date last reviewed: August 28, 2018

Graph: Mexico major export commodities (2017)
Graph: Mexico major export commodities (2017)
Graph: Mexico major export markets (2017)
Graph: Mexico major export markets (2017)
Graph: Mexico major import commodities (2017)
Graph: Mexico major import commodities (2017)
Graph: Mexico major import markets (2017)
Graph: Mexico major import markets (2017)

Source: Trade Map, Fitch Solutions
Date last reviewed: August 28, 2018

4.2 Trade in Services

Graph: Mexico trade in services
Graph: Mexico trade in services

Source: WTO
Date last reviewed: August 28, 2018

5. Trade Policies

  • The Mexican government has taken decisive steps in recent years to further liberalise import regulations in place on a wide array of products. These efforts have greatly enhanced the prospects for exporters in the Mexican market, who currently face a considerably lower import barrier than was in place a few years ago.
  • Mexico has been a WTO member since January 1, 1995, and a member of GATT since August 24, 1986. The Harmonised System is used for goods classification and customs clearance in Mexico. As a WTO member, Mexico affords at least most favoured nation (MFN) tariff treatment to all its trading partners. Tariffs are levied on most products entering Mexico, applying ad valorem to the CIF values of imports. Since 2008, Mexico has embarked on a years-long unilateral effort to reduce its MFN duties rates on approximately 97% of manufactured imports. A significant round of cuts took place on January 1, 2013, covering certain apparel, textile made-ups and footwear, reducing the MFN duty rate for apparel and textile made-ups imported into Mexico to 20%. Tariffs aside, most imports are subject to a 16% value-added tax (VAT), while a 0.8% ad valorem customs processing fee is levied on imports.
  • The country has good potential for widening its range of trade partners, as businesses in Mexico benefit from numerous FTAs with large global markets and Mexico enjoys preferential access to 45 countries, including the EU, US and Japan. In addition to NAFTA (with the US and Canada), Mexico is a member of the Pacific Alliance (with Peru, Colombia and Chile), and has also struck bilateral agreements with Bolivia, Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Uruguay, and partial preferential agreements with Brazil and Paraguay. In addition, Mexico boasts numerous FTAs with wider global trading partners, including Japan, Israel and the EU, ensuring that the vast majority of international trade is covered by FTAs, significantly reducing trade barriers. These FTAs will mitigate the risks of overreliance on the US market to some extent, providing a number of other easily accessible export destinations.
  • Mexican product standard regulations can be classified under two categories, namely mandatory technical regulations (NOMs) including labelling requirements issued by government agencies and ministries, and voluntary standards (NMXs) issued by recognised national standardisation bodies. In short, most of the standards and certificates are in line with US standards. In addition, on labelling, all products intended for retail sale in Mexico are required to bear a label in Spanish prior to importation.
  • The extensive network of FTAs means that businesses in Mexico benefit from generally low barriers to international trade. The vast majority of trade takes place within the framework of FTAs, meaning that tariff and non-tariff barriers are minimal. The average tariff rate on imports to Mexico stands at 5.0%, which is moderate on a regional comparison, but this is largely offset by the application of FTAs on most trade that takes place in the country. Though Mexico's final bound tariff rate with the WTO is higher, at an average of 36.2%, tariffs are rarely raised to this level and setting of tariff rates is generally transparent and well publicised. Some other trade barriers exist in terms of inconsistent and opaque customs procedures and import licensing requirements, but these do not pose major obstacles to businesses.
  • As of December 2017, Mexico applies no anti-dumping (AD) order on Hong Kong’s exports. The transition duties imposed by Mexico on a range of Chinese mainland products were eliminated on December 12, 2011. In addition, the Mexican government has stressed that regular AD and safeguard actions against Chinese mainland products may be initiated to protect the domestic apparel, footwear and other sectors from injurious competition from abroad. As it now stands, Mexico applies several AD measures on Chinese imports, such as hydraulic bottle jacks, mushrooms and seamless steel tubing, while it has initiated a number of investigation cases on imports such as children’s bicycles and certain steel products from the Chinese mainland, while it does not apply any countervailing (CV) measures on imports from the Chinese mainland or Hong Kong.
  • The customs process in Mexico is relatively efficient and not burdened by excessive bureaucracy. There are some concerns associated with inconsistent application of regulations at the border, as well as the transparency in the customs process.

Source: WTO - Trade Policy Review

6. Trade Agreement

6.1 Multinational Trade Agreements


  1. Bilateral FTAs with Bolivia, Costa Rica, Colombia, Nicaragua, Chile, and Uruguay are in place. These bilateral agreements help to boost regional trade, but many have been superseded by regional agreements as stated below.

  2. Mexico-EU: In April 2018, The European Union and Mexico reached an agreement on a new free trade deal, which marks a boon for both parties in the face of increased protectionism from the United States under President Donald Trump. The EU and Mexico wanted to update a trade deal agreed 21 years ago that largely covers industrial goods. The new deal adds farm products, more services, investment and government procurement, and includes provisions on labour and environmental standards and fighting corruption. The deal will, for example, cut Mexican tariffs and will also allow Mexican companies to bid for government contracts in Europe and EU companies for those in Mexico, including at state level. With this agreement, Mexico joins Canada, Japan and Singapore in the growing list of partners willing to work with the EU in defending open, fair and rules-based trade. The EU is an important export market for Mexico, and lower trade barriers stimulate new trade and investment.

  3. Mexico-Chile-Colombia-Peru: In a bid to have better synergy when making inroads into the Asian market, Mexico signed an accord in June 2012 with Chile, Colombia and Peru to establish the Pacific Alliance (PA) to reach out to the Asia Pacific region as a united force. In February 2014, the PA members reached an agreement to eliminate tariffs on 92% of goods traded within the bloc by 2015, while the remaining 8% will be dropped progressively and steadily in the following years. The agreement facilitates regional trade and provides a base for the negotiation of wider regional trade agreements.

  4. Mexico-Japan: A bilateral free trade agreement was signed in September 2004 after lengthy negotiations. It took effect in April 2005. Japan is a key source of imports to Mexico and this agreement helps to lay the groundwork for wider FTAs between Latin America and Asia.

Active, But under Re-Negotiation

  1. Mexico-US-Canada: The NAFTA has been in effect since January 1, 1994. The agreement was signed in December 1992; NAFTA side agreements were signed in August 1993. The Mexican economy is highly integrated with the US and Canadian markets, and the vast majority of Mexican exports are destined for these two countries. NAFTA has become central to Mexico's export-led manufacturing industries and hugely important to the Mexican economy. The risk of disruption to Mexico's trade regime has steadily increased as the protectionist rhetoric of US President Donald Trump has translated into action - notably the renegotiation of the NAFTA agreement. The greater concern for businesses is the future of the NAFTA agreement, which is currently under renegotiation at the instigation of the Trump administration. The short time frame intended for the renegotiation, the existence of a number of ‘red lines’ that the parties are not willing to cross, and the lack of progress at the time of writing have increased the risk that the renegotiation will fail and that the US will unilaterally decide to walk away from the agreement. Any breakdown in NAFTA would be damaging for Mexico's trade regime and economy, given its heavy reliance on the US, causing disruption to supply chains, an increase in tariff and non-tariff barriers, and dampening FDI inflows.
Awaiting Ratification
  1. Mexico was a member of the original Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement, which was formally signed by its 12 signatories in February 2016, but never came into force after US president Donald Trump signed an executive order formally withdrawing the US from the trade deal in January 2017. Despite the absence of the US from the agreement, the remaining 11 TPP nations officially agreed on key aspects of the trade pact on November 11, 2017 and signed the document in early 2018. The new agreement, called the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), is awaiting ratification from signatories. Mexico's senate ratified CPTPP in April 2018, becoming the first signatory to do so, with 73 votes in favour, 24 against and four abstentions.
Under Negotiation
  1. Mexico-Brazil: Brazil is looking to sign new free-trade agreements with Mexico as Brazil is Mexico's fourth largest export market, and tariff-free trade would help to further diversify the country away from reliance on the US.

  2. Mexico-EFTA: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland signed a free-trade agreement with Mexico in November 2000. A third round of negotiations on the review of the FTA took place in Lugano on January 16-20, 2017. This agreement assists with the diversification of trade partners, in conjunction with the EU FTA. Merchandise trade between the EFTA States and Mexico reached USD4.2 billion in 2014. EFTA's top exports to Mexico include pharmaceutical products; organic chemicals; machinery and mechanical appliances; and clocks and watches. EFTA imports mainly consisted of pharmaceutical products; precious stones; and mineral fuels and oil.

Source: WTO Regional Trade Agreements database, Fitch Solutions

7. Investment Policy

7.1 Foreign Direct Investment

Graph: Mexico FDI stock
Graph: Mexico FDI stock
Graph: Mexico FDI flow
Graph: Mexico FDI flow

Source: UNCTAD
Date last reviewed: August 28, 2018

7.2 Foreign Direct Investment Policy

  1. The government entity ProMéxico is the agency for Mexican trade and investment promotion and is tasked with encouraging FDI to the country, with establishments in a number of other states worldwide as well as a multilingual website offering information about local customs and procedures. In a strong push towards greater economic openness, focusing on the liberalisation of international trade and attraction of investment flows, Mexico has made significant changes to its Law on Foreign Investment and signed a wide web of free trade agreements with its trading partners. Meanwhile foreign trade incentives programmes are widely offered such as: the Import Tax Refund to Exporters (DRAWBACK); Manufacturing, Maquila and Export Service Industry (IMMEX); Sectorial Promotion Programs (PROSEC); and tax incentives programmes such as a tax credit of 30% of total spending on research and development activities (R&D) to support companies that invest in research, technology development and innovation.

  2. Mexico is one of the biggest recipients of FDI among emerging market states, both regionally and globally, offering numerous attractions for investors, which we expect to continue. Foreign investment is guided through the 1993 Foreign Investment Law, which provides non-discriminatory treatment for most foreign investment, eliminates performance requirements for many projects, and liberalises criteria for automatic approval of foreign investment. Most areas of the economy are open to 100% foreign ownership. In addition, there are no limits on capital flows and foreign exchange is determined at market rates, easing the remittance of profits for foreign businesses.

  3. The US's increasingly protectionist stance since 2017 and the possible collapse of NAFTA have raised concerns that the Mexican autos industry, which relies heavily on cross-border supply chains and sales to the US market, could be adversely affected.

  4. A number of liberalising reforms enacted by the government of President Peña Nieto will help to encourage greater foreign investment in the hydrocarbons, telecommunications and power sectors over the medium term. Changes to the constitution have ended the monopoly of state-owned oil company Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) in the hydrocarbons industry, meaning that foreign entities can now participate in exploration and production alongside the NOC. Initial licensing rounds to award contracts for the country's deepwater oil fields have attracted significant interest from major multinational oil companies, including ExxonMobil, Total and Chevron. New regulatory bodies for the telecommunications sector are also expected to improve competition and foreign involvement, with FDI now permitted up to 100%. In the power sector, the unbundling of the state-owned power provider Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE) and the opening of the power supply market to private players has significantly increased the scope for FDI into the electricity generation and distribution markets.

  5. Although 2013 reforms abolished a number of tax exemptions, there remain some incentive programmes that are intended to attract investment in export-led manufacturing industries. The most prominent is the IMMEX. This was specifically designed to attract foreign investment in manufacturing by offering deferred customs duties payments and exemption from import tax for temporarily imported goods used in the production process. A number of incentives have been removed since 2013, and designated Maquiladora businesses must now pay full income tax and VAT. Nevertheless, this project has contributed to the development of concentrated, developed and export-led industries, which now offer a high standard of industrial clusters for incoming businesses, particularly in the northern border regions with the US.

  6. Customs duties can be further lowered for certain industries or locations. The country's Prosec provides preferential rates for imported goods required for a range of industries, including mining, electronics, chemicals, textiles, transport equipment, cars and food processing. In addition, four free trade zones (FTZs) are now in operation at San Luis Potosi, Mexico City, Monterrey and Guanajuato. President Peña Nieto has also advanced his plan for the creation of special economic zones, which could potentially offer significant benefits to Mexico's poorer southern states over the long term. These zones include the Isthmus of Tehuantepec (linking the Pacific and Gulf of Mexico through Oaxaca and Veracruz), Puerto Chiapas and the port of Lázaro Cárdenas (benefiting Michoacán and Guerrero). The new legislation, aimed at bolstering investment and job creation in these states, will include special tax and customs benefits as well as plans to bolster infrastructure investment in these areas.

  7. While Mexico has removed foreign investment restrictions in its hydrocarbons, telecommunications and power sectors in recent years, some regulatory restrictions continue to be imposed, including a 49% cap on foreign ownership in agriculture and forestry. In the media space, foreign investors may only hold up to 49% of shares in newspaper publishing and TV broadcasting. In addition, state-owned entities (SOEs) retain a significant presence in several key sectors in Mexico. Notably, Pemex in the hydrocarbons industry and CFE in the power sector play dominant roles within their respective markets.

  8. Private companies entering the recently liberalised hydrocarbons space will have to comply with local content requirements, which vary according to the nature of the production activity. Companies engaged in exploration and production in onshore or shallow-water oil fields must meet an average local content requirement of 26.1%, increasing to 35% by 2025. This is a relatively significant requirement but is not too onerous for firms, which will not face difficulties sourcing machinery and capital goods from local suppliers, though the costs may be higher. For firms engaged in exploration and production activities in deep and ultra-deep water fields, the stipulation is that national suppliers must be used for 3% of exploration projects for the initial four years, rising to 6% for the next four years and 8% for the next three years. For development activities in deep and ultra-deep water fields, the local content requirement is 4% and for production it is 10%. The relatively low requirements for exploration of deep and ultra-deep water resources is intended to encourage foreign investment in the country's more inaccessible and technically complicated offshore oil and gas fields, without adding a considerable additional burden to operations.

Sources: WTO - Trade Policy Review, The International Trade Administration (ITA), US Department of Commerce, Fitch Solutions

7.3 Free Trade Zones and Investment Incentives

Free Trade Zone/Incentive ProgrammeMain Incentives Available
IMMEXBusinesses enjoy exemption from import tax and deferred customs duties payments.
There are four FTZs at San Luis Potosi, Mexico City, Monterrey and GuanajuatoOpen to all industries, offering lower customs duties, and delayed payment of tariffs, reduced bureaucracy for exports and imports, and local access to customs officers.

Source: ProMéxico, Fitch Solutions

8. Taxation – 2018

  • Value added tax: 16%
  • Corporate income tax: 30%
Source: PwC Taxes at a Glance, Fitch Solutions

8.1 Important Updates to Taxation Information

  • The Mexican government introduced some changes to the tax code as part of the 2017 budget, which was approved in November 2016. The majority of these changes are regarding compliance, including additional information sharing and compliance for income tax and VAT. This followed the 2016 Tax Reform package, which introduced changes to promote savings and increase incentives for businesses and investors. In particular, reforms for the energy sector ease the tax burden for investors. Taxpayers who invest in renewable energy equipment and use renewable energy in their operations - specifically solar, wind, hydro, geothermal energy and biomass fuel equipment - are eligible to obtain a 100% upfront deduction for the cost of new investment in equipment.
  • There are also two new reforms that will ease the burden on investors. The tax reform repealed the tax on cash deposits in Mexican banks (IDE), while the flat tax on business income (IETU), which functions like a minimum tax, has been eliminated. Regarding international assignees in Mexico, the IETU tax applied to rental income, and in some cases caused a significant additional tax burden, which has been relieved from 2014 onwards and decreases costs for investors accordingly. Businesses also benefit from a streamlined online process for tax administration, which means that only six payments are required, the lowest number regionally, and all are available to be filed through e-services. The time taken to complete tax returns has fallen somewhat, though it still takes a substantial amount of time to pay taxes in Mexico. About 241 hours are spent annually on this process, which is below the regional average, but still well above the average in Mexico's OECD peers, at 160.7 hours.

8.2 Business Taxes

Type of TaxTax Rate and Base
Corporate Income Tax
30% on profits
Capital Gains Tax30% (treated as normal income) expect for capital gains derived from publicly traded shares sold by individuals or non-Mexican residents, which are taxed at 10%
Payroll Tax2-3% on gross salaries
Residence Tax5% on gross salaries
Social security contributions15% on gross salaries
15% on gross salaries
Real Estate Acquisition Tax2-4.5% on market value of real estate transferred

Source: PwC Tax Summaries 2018
Date last reviewed: August 24, 2018

9. Foreign Worker Requirements

9.1 Broad Restrictions Applicable

Foreign nationals entering Mexico are classified under the following immigration categories: Visitor, Temporary Resident or Permanent Resident. Employing foreign workers in Mexico can be a difficult process. Foreigners who are working or living in Mexico must be aware of the expiration date of their immigration status. In general, renewal requests must be submitted within 30 days before the expiration date of the immigration card. If the immigration status expires while the foreigner is abroad, Mexican nationals are systematically favoured over foreigners in competition for jobs, a situation that is enshrined in the country's legal code. Recent reforms have streamlined the process of acquiring work visas, as Mexico's need for highly skilled workers has grown, but some restrictions remain. In addition, Mexico's reputation for heightened security risks means that companies will be forced to offer higher wages and 'danger pay' premiums in order to attract highly skilled foreign workers, particularly in the most dangerous states such as Chihuahua, Guerro and Sinaloa.

9.2 Employer Requirements

Individuals or companies that intend to hire or have foreigners under their responsibility must request a mandatory employer registration file from the INM. All registered employers are required to formally notify the INM regarding changes in, among other items, their articles of incorporation, address and revocations of powers of attorney. Any reportable change must be disclosed within 30 calendar days. In addition, companies are required to annually update their employer registration file at the INM after filing their annual Mexican corporate income tax return. Temporary and permanent residents must notify the INM of any changes regarding residence, marital status, nationality and location of their workplace or employer. Notifications by residents must be filed with the INM within 90 calendar days following such a change; otherwise, the resident may be subject to fines ranging from 20 to 100 days of the official Mexican minimum wage.

9.3 Migrant Worker Categories

Mexico has numerous categories of immigrant workers, which all require different visas, but the following are the most relevant to businesses that need to import foreign nationals.

  • 'Cargo de confianza' (management employee) status may be obtained by foreigners who fill key executive posts in established corporations or institutions. The Ministry of the Interior will grant such status only if it is convinced that the same work cannot be done by a Mexican national. This process can take several months.

  • 'Inversionista' (investor) status can be obtained by foreigners who invest in industrial activities that contribute to economic and/or social development in Mexico. This is a one-year visa and can be renewed up to four times.

  • 'Tecnico' (technician) status may be granted to people who carry out research or technical activities that cannot be performed by a Mexican national.

9.4 Permanent Residence Including Dependants

In general, new companies are not permitted to apply for permanent residence visas for personnel until such time as the government considers their activity of importance to the nation and they have been operational for more than two years.

In terms of dependents, only minors younger than 18 qualify as dependent children of work permit holders. Sons and daughters aged 18 or older will have to obtain resident status in their own capacity in order to accompany a work permit holder. Spouses of workers receive a special status, which is a temporary tourist/business visa that does not authorise employment. This makes it harder for firms to attract married employees, particularly those with children over or approaching the age limit.

9.5 Local and Foreign Worker Quotas

Federal labour law requires that 90% of a company's skilled and unskilled workers be Mexican nationals. A special provision does permit temporary employment of foreign technicians up to 10% of the workforce. However, this is only legal if it can be proved that the requisite skilled labour does not already exist in the country. This 10% quota does not apply to managers, directors or other key officers, who must apply for special immigration status.

Source: Instituto Nacional de Migración, Fitch Solutions

10. Risks

10.1 Sovereign Credit Ratings

Rating (Outlook)Rating Date
A3 (Stable)11/04/2018
Standard & Poor'sA- (Stable)18/12/2017
Fitch Ratings
BBB+ (Stable)16/03/2018

Source: Moody's, Standard & Poor's, Fitch Ratings

10.2 Competitiveness and Efficiency Indicators

World Ranking
Ease of Doing Business Index
Ease of Paying Taxes Index
Logistics Performance Index
Corruption Perception Index
IMD World Competitiveness45/6148/6351/63

Source: World Bank, IMD, Transparency International

10.3 Fitch Solutions Risk Indices

World ranking
Economic Risk Index Rank50/202
Short-Term Economic Risk Score
Long-Term Economic Risk Score63.364.665.3
Political Risk Index Rank109/202
Short-Term Political Risk Score
Long-Term Political Risk Score67.164.760.7
Operational Risk Index Rank86/201
Operational Risk Index Score50.851.251.7

Source: Fitch Solutions
Date last reviewed: August 24, 2018

10.4 Fitch Solutions Risk Summary

Mexico's growing manufacturing sector, solid private consumption levels and favourable demographics signal that the country is well placed to see steady economic expansion over the coming decade. We expect Mexico's oil sector to become an increasingly important driver of growth, following energy sector liberalisation in December 2013. There is a risk that a spike in trade tariffs by the US could send shockwaves across the Mexican economy and tip it into a deep recession.

Mexico offers an attractive location for investment in many respects, but several risks, largely surrounding the government's inability to enforce the rule of law, continue to complicate the operating environment. Powerful drug cartels are present throughout the country, fuelling a high rate of violent crime and driving corrupt practices in the police force, judiciary and other government institutions. Nevertheless, numerous attractions - including strong logistics infrastructure that offers efficient supply chains and a reliable utilities supply, a sizeable and low-cost labour market and low levels of trade bureaucracy - mean that Mexico will continue to hold appeal for investors who are able to absorb the elevated costs of security measures.

Date last reviewed: August 30, 2018

10.5 Fitch Solutions Political And Economic Risk Indices

Graph: Mexico short term political risk index
Graph: Mexico short term political risk index
Graph: Mexico long term political risk index
Graph: Mexico long term political risk index
Graph: Mexico short term economic risk index
Graph: Mexico short term economic risk index
Graph: Mexico long term economic risk index
Graph: Mexico long term economic risk index

100 = Lowest risk; 0 = Highest risk
Source: Fitch Solutions Economic and Political Risk Indices
Date last reviewed: August 21, 2018

10.6 Fitch Solutions Operational Risk Index

Operational RiskLabour Market RiskTrade and Investment RiskLogistics RiskCrime and Security Risk
Mexico score51.758.658.658.930.7
Central and South America Average45.148.245.547.839.0
Central and South America Position (out of 20)5
Latin America Average48.350.249.447.046.7
Latin America Position (out of 42)15
Global Average49.749.850.049.349.9
Global Position (out of 201)86

100 = Lowest risk; 0 = Highest risk
Source: Fitch Solutions Operational Risk Index

Graph: Mexico vs global and regional averages
Graph: Mexico vs global and regional averages
Operational Risk Index
Labour Market Risk Index
Trade and Investment Risk IndexLogistics Risk IndexCrime and Secruity Risk Index
Costa Rica53.749.860.255.149.7
El Salvador41.842.045.351.528.3
Regional Averages45.948.447.049.338.7
Emerging Markets Averages46.848.047.545.846.1
Global Markets Averages49.849.850.049.349.9

100 = Lowest risk; 0 = Highest riske
Source: Fitch Solutions Operational Risk Index
Date last reviewed: August 21, 2018

11. Hong Kong Connection

11.1 Hong Kong’s Trade with Mexico

Graph: Major export commodities to Mexico (2017)
Graph: Major export commodities to Mexico (2017)
Graph: Major import commodities from Mexico (2017)
Graph: Major import commodities from Mexico (2017)
Graph: Merchandise exports to Mexico
Graph: Merchandise exports to Mexico
Graph: Merchandise imports from Mexico
Graph: Merchandise imports from Mexico

Exchange Rate HK$/US$, average
7.76 (2013)
7.75 (2014)
7.75 (2015)
7.76 (2016)
7.79 (2017)
Source: Hong Kong Census and Statistics Department, Fitch Solutions
Date last reviewed: August 21, 2018

Growth rate (%)
Number of Mexican residents visiting Hong Kong39,545

Source:  Hong Kong Tourism Board

Growth rate (%)
Number of Latin American residents visiting Hong Kong195,8541.8

Source: Hong Kong Tourism Board
Date last reviewed: August 24, 2018

11.2 Commercial Presence in Hong Kong

Growth rate (%)
Number of Mexican companies in Hong KongN/A
- Regional headquarters
- Regional offices
- Local offices

11.3 Treaties and agreements between Hong Kong and Mexico

  • Mexico signed on June 18, 2012 a comprehensive agreement for the avoidance of double taxation (CDTA) with Hong Kong, aiming to encourage the flow of investment and talent between the two economies.

  • Tax paid on income in Hong Kong by Mexican residents has been allowed as credit against tax payable in Mexico since 2014/2015, while a lower withholding tax is applied to Hong Kong residents receiving interest from Mexico.

  • Hong Kong also has an Air Services Income Agreement with Mexico effective since December 3, 2008. In addition to the customs co-operation agreement signed on March 31, 2016, a bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (IPPA) is also pending signing.

11.4 Chamber of Commerce (or Related Organisations) in Hong Kong

MEXCHAM - The Mexican Chamber of Commerce
Address: Unit A, 13/F, Trust Tower, 68 Johnston Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 2528 4999

Source: www.mexcham.hk/

Mexican Consulate General in Hong Kong
Address: 2507-2509, 25/F Hopewell Center, 183 Queen's Road East, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Email: infohko@sre.gob.mx
Tel: (852) 2511 3305

Source: consulmex.sre.gob.mx/hongkong/

11.5 Visa Requirements for Hong Kong Residents

Holders of HKSAR passport or BN(O) do not require a visa to enter Mexico as tourists, visitors in transit or business visitors. Tourists and business visitors can stay in Mexico for up to 180 days. Visitors in transit can stay for up to 30 days.

Source: Mexican Consulate General in Hong Kong

Content provided by Picture: Fitch Solutions – BMI Research